The Domino Effect

What do Bono, Charlie Sharpe (founder of Ozark National Life and Heartland Dairies), and most of my clients have in common? They are all business owners who have used their success and influence to create positive change in the lives of other people.  My husband Duke and I   attended the U2 concert in Minneapolis a week ago. It was AWESOME!! Bono, the Edge, Adam and David all performed with passion in the pouring rain. The music was outstanding. The technology (you’d have to see the Claw in person to understand just how amazing it is) was incredible. But for me the concert was even more inspiring because of the example Bono and the members of U2 demonstrate of using their platform to create change. Bono is well known for his support of Amnesty International, Project One and the Red project. He personally meets the hungry, disenfranchised and politically oppressed and does what he can to improve their lives. During the concert 58,000 fans were privileged to view a Skype message from Aung San Suu Kyi, the woman elected president of Burma. She was just recently released from prison after two years of oppression. Her crime: being elected in a democratic election. She was so thankful to U2 and their fans for her freedom. It moved my heart and made me glad to be a part of something even bigger than a rock concert.

Charlie Sharpe is not a household name, but thousands of people owe much to the lifelong commitment to service and integrity of this man. Charlie is the president of my husband’s company, Ozark National Life. Charlie had a vision for offering what he calls the Balanced Program of insurance and investments, and when the company he worked for as a young man didn’t support his ideas, he went out on his own and started Ozark. Now people around the country are saving and investing and creating wealth. But Charlie’s influence only begins there. After he had created this highly successful company, Charlie had a vision of creating a place where people could come and get free of alcohol and other addictions. He built Heartland on farmland in northern Missouri where he grew up. The men in his program needed work, so he built Heartland Dairy. The dairy needed trucks and other businesses to support the dairy, so he built those. Later a lodge, restaurants, cleaners, beauty parlor and other small businesses were added. At the center of this growing city is the church, school, and now a small college. Visiting Heartland last June was awe-inspiring as I couldn’t stop thinking about the Domino Effect of one man on so many lives.

How are you creating a Domino Effect with your time and resources? As a successful business owner, executive or entrepreneur, you have much to be thankful for and so much more than so many others. I realized not too long ago that almost every one of my clients is creating a Domino Effect of their own – transformational leaders in their work, their community and the world.

Let me know what you are up to – I’ll be highlighting transformational leaders here in the coming months and on a new radio show I’ll be launching in the fall!

Advertisements

What’s a Conscious Business?

For years, it was considered impolite to discuss religious views or politics over dinner, and it was inappropriate to talk about personal or spiritual values at work. But people are ready for change!! There is a strong trend toward “consciousness”. Consciousness, according to Webster’s, is the capacity to observe, choose, and act in accord with your values. And “conscious business” means applying your personal and spiritual values at every level of your work: in being aware of the needs of others and expressing your own—in seeing the hidden emotional obstacles that may be holding your team back—in making good decisions under pressure—and even in delving into such “spiritual” questions as “Who am I?” and “What is my real purpose here?”

In researching companies for his book, A Spiritual Audit of Corporate America, business professor Ian I. Mitroff found that “Spirituality could be the ultimate competitive advantage.” A study reported in MIT’s Sloan Management Review concluded that, “People are hungry for ways in which to practice their spirituality in the workplace without offending their co-workers or causing acrimony.”  The word “spirituality” is used generically and seems to emphasize how one’s beliefs are applied day to day, rather than “religion”, which can invoke fears of dogmatism, exclusivity and proselytizing in the workplace. Rather than compartmentalizing your beliefs apart from your day to day practices, you are able to be a fully integrated, fully expressed human being.

Becoming more conscious in business requires courage and an open mind. If you’re ready to make that leap—and start turning your work into something that cultivates your intelligence, creativity, and integrity — a Conscious Business Coach might be just what you need!